Life-Span Map

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Fall
12
Fall
12
PSYCH 304 – Dr. Kenneth Moore
PSYCH 304 – Dr. Kenneth Moore
My life through Erikson’s eyes
Riham El Khorazaty
ID: 900092686
My life through Erikson’s eyes
Riham El Khorazaty
ID: 900092686
08
Fall
08
Fall

“The most glamorous of all wars, is the war between oneself and himself.” How much sense does this quote make? What if it comes from an old warrior who has taken chief leadership roles in four major military battles? This is a quote of my grandfather, General Ahmed El Kouny, a major capstone in my life development. Although a military man with an “armed mentality” as he always labeled himself, he could through basic commonsense come to Erikson’s psychosocial analysis of personal development; a human being is in constant war against oneself. The first battle I faced was the day I was born, a battle of which the borders of my circle of trust was settled. Throughout my years, biological, social and psychological turning points in my life redefined my trust circle along-with many other circles of influence on my personality and identity. May his soul rest in peace, he constructed the first stage of my life-span development; the stage of initial identity! Born between my grandfather’s arms to a father I never met, made me grow the stage of trust versus mistrust so quick. Since then, and up until today, the General as the head of my family, and my whole mother’s family is my circle of trust, versus a circle that I seldom meet, and seldom care about, which is my father’s. I grew up this trust-mistrust equilibrium since my early infancy, and shaped my identity accordingly; my birth being a landmark. I grew to see people as members of the trust circle, or with label of mistrust. Ironically enough, I visited this stage again in my 20th year, as I got engaged to a member of my trusted family circle, which turned later to an utter failure. It was a point in which I understood quiet well, that trust and trustworthiness are not matters of birth, but a life-long struggle. Being worth the trust and around people with the same trait, since then became a major concern of myself. My mother’s only child, and the youngest of five other male cousins, I was both challenged to prove that I am no less than my elder male cousins, and anxious of the loneliness I might encounter if I did not keep up with my cousins expectations. This challenge I took so serious, and could manage quiet well, since then, and upon all stages of my development, to be on the same social, mental, and even physical level with my male cousins. I grew up as a synchronized swimmer, which brought me since my freshmen year in AUC to the swimming team. I even wrestled, boxed, and played other masculine games with my cousins, which explains a lot about my physical appearance and fitness. Up until this date, the majority of my friends are men. For so long, I never asked why, but it was just the case. Erikson’s theory made me understand that it is a matter of a stage I encountered in my life where industry for me meant being accompanied by my surrounding males, and otherwise meant inferiority. Another major turning point in my life-span development was menstruation. Puberty is any woman’s biological turning point. It is the moment when a girl turns into a woman, with universe changing its meanings and outlooks, and gender attraction becomes both a hope and a threat. However, for me it was not only biological. Being part of the conservative El Kouny family, I became no longer allowed to live in the same house with my non-biological brothers, my cousins. The menstruation moment was not to me this happy moment when I look forward for knowing the other, but merely meant separation from my family, simply meaning that “my people,” “my cousins,” now should be labeled as “others”. I relate this stage to Erikson’s stage of identity versus identity confusion; where the question of “who am I” within the social isle became a pressing one. It was...
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